Glory by the Cross
I am preaching through the gospel of Mark and in chapter nine, Jesus prophesies a second time about his pending death and resurrection. The point added is that Jesus understood his coming violent death at the hands of violent men as ordered by the plan of God. The disciples came to this conclusion to in Acts 4:25-28. Jesus then warns his disciples about being concerned about their greatness, their rights, and their standing. He taught them to be his disciples that they should be last and servant of all. For Jesus and his disciples, for God and his kingdom, the way to glory is by the suffering of the cross.
Jesus’ death by crucifixion is not an example of how to live as a Christian. His life and death is truly a substitutionary one for the person who believes in him. Jesus lived the perfectly obedient life required by the law for his people. He died the death required by law of God for sinners such as us. All this purchases eternal salvation and life for those who believe in Jesus.
Yet, Jesus calls his servants to live a life of service in suffering for others. The point is that the gospel of Jesus changes one’s heart. The issue is no longer your own greatness or your rights. The issue is the glory of God as Jesus shows us. The issue is the love of others by service.
This ethic once visible in American life and public service is what is so patently missing not only in the protests in Wisconsin but in our world. The Church needs to pray for revival and reformation. The Church needs to live by service and love in Jesus Christ.